201504.14

National Ice Taskforce important for region


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Tuesday 14 April 2015:

The National Ice Taskforce announced by the Prime Minister will be particularly important for communities like ours.

Ice use is a significant problem in the greater Frankston and Mornington Peninsula region, where local police figures show a four-fold increase in methamphetamine problems in just two years.

The Taskforce will ensure the fight against the drug in our communities is coordinated, targeted and effective.

Former Victorian Chief Commissioner of Police Ken Lay will head the Taskforce and look at all existing efforts to address ice and identify the best ways to approach education, health and law enforcement going forward.

Drug use is not just a health issue, it also leads to crime, destroys lives and rips families apart. The link between drug use and crime is particularly high locally.

Local police have identified ice as the leading driver behind thefts in the Frankston and Mornington Peninsula area.

In Frankston, Council figures show that drug related crime is 45% higher than the Victorian average for the manufacture and cultivation of drugs, and 74% higher than the Victorian average for possession and use of drugs.

Ice is ruining individuals, destroying families, and harming our communities.
Because of this, the Taskforce will consult widely to ensure all aspects of this menace are being addressed.

Following advice from the Taskforce the Government will work with States and Territories to develop a National Ice Action Strategy to tackle the growing problem.

An interim report will be provided to the Prime Minister by the middle of this year.

I will make sure the impacts of ice on the Frankston and Mornington communities are fed into the Taskforce.

People interested in submitting to the Taskforce should register with my office on (03) 9781 2333 or at b.billson.mp@aph.gov.au.